February 26, 1999

February 26, 1999

Do you believe in love at first sight? My daddy told me that in Sicily there was love before first sight. Couples were matched before they saw each other. He said that a family which had a son got together with a family that had a daughter. They would make plans to get together at the girl’s house. They would put flowers all over and spray a “come-hither” perfume in the room that had more exotic power that the pill Viagra.

They would sit in the room far apart with soft music playing. On the wall behind the boy was a picture of a prince on a white horse. On the wall in the back of the girl was a picture of a beautiful girl in a negligee. After staring at each other for about half an hour and smelling that “come-hither’ perfume – all she could see was her date sitting on the white horse as a prince; and all he could see was his date in that negligee.

Well, they got married in the hour; nine months later “bambino.”

One day I was in the coffee shop and there was a nice looking young man walking toward me. He asked me if I was the one who wrote the column “Recollections.” He said he enjoyed reading the articles. He introduced himself as Girod Bourgeois. He said he was the son of Dr. Melvin Bourgeois. I told him that I knew his daddy who was in service during the Vietnamese war with my son, Dr. Don “Bobby” Guzzetta.

I also met Dr. Bourgeois’ wife at the Petroleum Club. She said she enjoyed reading my column. She said they were all so funny and interesting. She told me that she looks forward to getting The Daily Review on Fridays to read it.

Did you ever hear of the expression “something is rotten the Denmark?” Well, when I was in Copenhagen, I was walking on one of the streets that had a bad odor. It smelled like rotten eggs as we walked past a cheese plant. We had to hold our noses as the smell was awful. So one day in the grocery recently, I saw that same cheese on the shelf that I had seen in the plant in Denmark. I bought a block of it. I cut a small piece and threw it on the ground for my cat “Sheba” to eat. He smelled it, threw up his nose and buried it.

I was at a restaurant in Morgan City one night when two people who work there came to my table and told me how much they enjoy my column “Recollections” in The Daily Review.

Like Lawrence Welk use to say: “What a lovely couple.”

What’s the largest crab you have ever seen? Sam Russo said he saw one 2 feet long, claw to claw. “Mutt” LeBlanc said he boiled crabs the other day in a large wash tub. He said the crabs were so large that all he could boil was one at a time.

Pierre Comeaux from Pierre Part said he caught some crabs that weighed in at 30 pounds apiece. Joe Thibodeaux from Belle River said: “Dat’s nothing – I had a crab so big that I used the shell for a carport.”

T-Joe LeBlanc said: “Meh-yeah, dat ain’t nothing – I was crabbing in a boat in Ricohoc and caught a dozen crabs that were so heavy they sunk my 20 foot boat.”

T-Man Aucoin from Bayou DeLarge told me that he saw a crab so big that it was chasing a 12-foot alligator.

I was walking through the cemetery the other day when I came upon an old grave. It was Mrs. Antoon’s grave, a lady who once had a fruit stand about two doors from the Electric Theatre. I got a weak feeling in my stomach. I felt so guilty and sorry for Mr. and Mrs. Antoon. The boys in Berwick used to give her a bad time. I’ll never forget the time that I was sitting on Mrs. Whilamena Hebert’s steps across from the Antoon’s, when Paul Lemke, Ham Bergeron, Duke Vincent, and Spanola Ryan went over to Mrs. Antoon’s fruit stand. One of them walked in the store pretending he wanted to buy something, while the other boys threw peaches and apples to each other, until they had enough. I knew it wasn’t right, I knew it was the wrong thing to do, but what could I do? I was only a little boy. Somebody asked me why I didn’t report them to the police. I replied that I remembered when “Hungry” Larkins snitched on some boys at school. They caught “Hungry” Larkins one recess at school, took his pants off, and chased him all over the school grounds. I surely didn’t want them to take my pants off and expose my drawers with the emblem: “Red Ball Flour” on the seat!

I was in Cannata’s in Bayou Vista one morning and met Mrs. Fonston Lasseigne. She said she sure was glad to see me. She just had to tell me how much she enjoyed my column. She said it brought back so any memories of her young days. She told me that they were so realistic, that it made her want to cry.

Also, at the same place, I met Guy Cannata at the Deli. We got to talking about conditions today and yesterday. We both just could not get over the fact that a loaf of bread costs $1.75 that once only cost a nickel. Guy said that the kids today would pay $3 for a loaf of bread and wouldn’t think anything of it. He said they need to go through hard times like our parents did. Well, we laughed and I was so glad to see Guy.

* The End *

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